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Skype buys communications firm Groupme

Bolsters its feature list for Microsoft
Mon Aug 22 2011, 15:53

INTERNET TELEPHONY OUTFIT Skype has bought the messaging firm Groupme for a rumoured $80m.

Groupme's goal of making it easy for smartphone users to have group conversations made it an attractive target for Skype, which itself was acquired by Microsoft earlier this year. Apparently the deal grew out of a collaboration between Groupme and Skype, which resulted in the two companies realising that they wanted the same things.

In a statement, Groupme said, "Over the last few months, we had been in talks with Skype that started with discussions about potential commercial partnerships. As we got to know the core Skype team better, though, and as our conversations evolved, it quickly became evident that our visions were perfectly aligned."

For Skype, Groupme's technology could help it in the enterprise market where group communication is widely used. While Skype has an immensely popular service, it still doesn't make much money and one way to turbo-charge its earnings will be to get into the lucrative enterprise market.

While Groupme supports Apple's IOS, Google's Android, Research in Motion's Blackberry and Microsoft's Windows Phone 7 (WP7), it is likely that its acquisition by Skype will mean that Skype and in particular WP7 will see the benefits first. µ


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